The Henry Morgan Show (Part One)
Caustic half-hour satires by the cantankerous comedian and future "I've Got a Secret" panelist.
February 1, 2011
HenryMorganShow461225ChristmasStory CORRECTED DATING
LINK TO LIFE ARTCLE ON HENRY MORGAN
STATEMENT BY MORGAN: 'NOT SO MANY CHRISTMASSES AGO'
MRGAN DID NOT HAVE A HALF HOUR SHOW PRIOR TO 460902.
MILTON TATUMS AND HIS ORCHESTRA AND
BEN GRAUER, ANNOUNCER, WERE NOT ON THMS UNTIL AT LEAST 491014.
PERT KELTON, AND
WERE NOT ON THMS UNTIL AT LEAST 491209.
THIS EPISODE WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN PRIOR TO 1949.
IN 1949, DECEMBER:
491209 HenryMorganShow491209_Murder_in_the_Club_CopacabEanish 29.29..mp3 [THERE IS A 'BEAN' RATHER THAN A 'BAN' IN CopacabEanish].
491216 HenryMorganShow491216_The_Quest_Pests 29.40..mp3
491223 IS ONLY 1949 PRE-XMAS DATE LEFT.
NO SHOW IN FALL OF 1950.
JOEY'S MOTHER = [SOUNDS LIKE] PERT KELTON [INTERESTING INFORMATION ABOUT HER IS AVAILABLE]..
= BUTCH CABELL
= DAVID ANDERSON
JEANNIE = JOAN LATHAM
MORGAN GETS OFF AUDIENCE APPRECIATED JIBES ON;
WASHINGTON, THE MAN ON THE STREET = ARNOLD STANG.
[REGULAR CHARACTER ROLE IS GIRARD OR GERARD, MAYBE WITH TWO R'S.]
BUREAU OF PRINTING AND ENGRAVING, MAN IN BUREAU = ?
FBI, DIRECTOR = ?
SENATE COMMITEE, SENATOR = [SOUNDS MOST LIKE] JACK ALBERTSON IN GRUFF VOICE
WALTER MORGAN [WINCHELL] = HENRY MORGAN,
THE DIT-DITTER = MAY HAVE BEEN ART CARNEY,
H. V. KALTENMORGAN [KALTENBORN] = HENRY MORGAN
MARGARET TRUMAN = MAY HAVE BEEN ART CARNEY RATHER THAN JOAN GIBSON
GABRIAL MORGAN [HEATER] = HENRY MORGAN
I CANNOT IDENTIFY CORRECTLY THE ROLE[S] PLAYED BY ART CARNEY AS I CANNOT THOROUGHLY RECOGNIZE HIS VOICE.
I NEVER HEARD HIM PRIOR TO THE HONEYMOONERS, AND HIS VOICE HAD ALTERED BY THE TIME HE WAS IN MOVIES.
THERE MAY BE A DATUM ON MILTON TATUM OR TATUMS somewhere, but i did not make an exhaustive search.
BEN GRAUER [ANCR] SAYS, ON DIFFERENT EPISODES, THE FAMILY NAME AS A POSSESSIVE [TATUM'S] AND A SINGULAR SUBJECT THAT SOUNDS LIKE A PLURAL [TATUMS].
THIS WAS WITTY, AND TICKLED ALL THE RIGHT NERVES.
ONE OF THE BEST LINES [THOUGH IT GOT FEW LAUGHS] WAS NAME OF JEANNIE'S 365TH DOLL: 'DITTO'
MORGAN SEEMS TO BE A FREBERG FORERUNNER, AND FREBERG GUESTED ON THMS.
[ONE SHOW HAS MENTION OF PHYSICIANS AS ADVERTISING PITCHMEN, AND FREBERG, YEARS LATER, DID A COMMERCIAL AS SUCH...'9 OUT OF 10 DOCTORS' TYPE].
COURTESY OF rand’s esoteric otr http://randsesotericotr.podbean.com.
If you would like to know a bit more about Henry Morgan, WFMU has an extensive blog entry appreciation of Morgan's work. And here's a profile of Morgan from the April 14, 1947 edition of Life magazine that includes some great photos, including the famous "praying to the razor" shot that got him in trouble with his sponsor, Eversharp. (The ads interspersed with the article, by the way, are just a wonderfully funny as Morgan's parodies and include one featuring Senator Claghorn from the "Fred Allen Show".)
GOOGLE LIFE REFERENCE FOR HENRY MORGAN
WFMU REFERENCE FOR HENRY MORGAN
BOTH COURTESY OF rand’s esoteric otr http://randsesotericotr.podbean.com.
January 1, 2009
"The HENRY MORGAN Show???"
Somehow I could never get my head around the idea of Henry Morgan as a caustic, cantankerous person (the comedic equivalent of Harlan Ellison, I guess); he and the audience seem to be having a great time, his remarks about his sponsor are pretty mild (Bob and Ray used to goof on their sponsors all the time to no ill effect), and in general a good time seems to have been had by all. Maybe it had to do with broadcast standards back in the late '40s (there's sort of a shocked response from the audience when Morgan uses the term "Lorraine la quelle" in connection with French weather)-- what seems mild to us might have seemed edgy back then. Anyway, the show is funny and goes off into satire a bit more than some of the old-time radio shows I've heard. Arnold Stang makes a great guest star-- he and Morgan get a lot of mileage out of being transplanted New Yorkers in Hollywood, and Stang's character Gerard has a sort of running soap opera going with his girlfriend.
Anyway, this is very good stuff, and I recommend it highly. Push-pull, click-click!
July 27, 2007
A good show, good comedy, fully recomended
Mr. Morgan's show stands the test of time for OTR; the shows are interesting, funny, and can easily serve as alternative entertainment during commutes to and from work. The days of good drive time entertainment are relatively gone; Bob and Ray (Boston and New York); Harden and Weaver (Washington DC); Hudson and Landry, Lohman and Barkley (L.A.) Klayburn and Finch (NYC) Mr. Morgan would have easily fit in with them. If you have a chance, search the bookstores for his autobiography, Here's Morgan. It's a well written book (written by him, not ghost-written) and both easy and fun to read.
He is remembered best on radio as a barbed but often self-deprecating satirist---and frequent changer of sponsors after a typical barb stuck in their ample craws. He wrote in his memoirs that his radio opening, "Good evening, anybody, here's Morgan" was a dig at singer Kate Smith, who "started her show with a condescending, "Hello, everybody.' "I, on the other hand, was happy if anybody listened in." He also targeted his sponsors freely. One early sponsor had been Adler Shoe Stores, which came close to cancelling its account after Morgan started making references to "Old Man Adler" on the air; the chain changed its mind after it was learned patronage spiked upward with many new patrons asking to meet Old Man Adler. His half-hour weekly show allowed him more room to develop and expand his topical, often ad-libbed satires. He continued to target sponsors whose advertising copy rankled him, and those barbs didn't always sit well with his new sponsors, either. Perhaps most notoriously, Life Savers candy dropped Morgan after he accused them of fraud for what amounted to hiding the holes in the famous lifesaving ring-shaped sweets. "I claimed that if the manufacturer would give me all those centers, I would market them as Morgan's Mint Middles and say no more about it." The irony is that Life Savers in the 1990s actually tried marketing Life Saver holes. Morgan had his fans and his professional admirers, including comedy writer Robert Benchley, author James Thurber, fellow radio humorists Fred Allen, Jack Benny, future Today Show host Dave Garroway, and Red Skelton. Morgan for his part claimed Allen as a primary influence; Allen often had Morgan as a guest on his own radio hit. "If Fred Allen bit the hand that fed him," Gerry Nachman wrote in a history of OTR, "Henry Morgan tried to bite off the whole arm."
July 20, 2007
A pleasant discovery
Let's face it, if you're looking here, you're looking for something different in OTR. You've found it. While not as polished a wit as Fred Allen, nor as funny as Bob and Ray, Morgan's literate humor has stayed remarkably fresh in its skewering of the zeitgeist. He'd shine on Comedy Central today. He was ill-used in the 60s as a What's-My-Shoe-Size game-show panelist, funnier and more acerbic as an infrequent raconteur on the Merv Griffin show in the 70s, where he waxed wroth on many issues du jour, but especially his bitter divorces. (I can still hear him bemoaning the fate of Elizabeth Taylor becoming 'a fat old broad' in 1974!) These programs showcase Morgan the young lion, in full roar. Great stuff. Too bad we don't have more.